Donald Trump is doing his best to get good ratings for his candidacy. His campaign is a success as a reality show. That means people believe what he says. It does not matter if what he says is true. Take this as an example. He says Trump Tower in New York City is 68 stories high. In fact, it is 58 stories high. So what! He just keeps repeating the number 68. It is his version of reality.
President Bashar al-Assad of Syria also has a reality show. He called in reporters. They were well-known journalists from around the world.
He told them Syria is much stronger than it was five years ago. He said the mass killings and displacements in the country are not due to him. They are the result of Islamic militants and the United States.
A reporter could not believe what she was hearing. She knew that Assad had allowed Russia and Iran to come into his country. They came to make war on Syrian citizens. Assad said he allowed this because the US wants to impose its form of government on Syria.
The reporter said it was surreal. Assad’s idea was to sell Syria as a country in charge of its people. He wants to show that the Syrian people support his regime. He rejected the idea that he committed war crimes. He said the US is guilty of that.
He said terrorists killed thousands of Syrians. He said none of his opponents is “talking about their war crimes.”
Reporters said to him that Russian planes killed thousands of Syrians. That there is starvation in Syria. That prison guards tortured thousands of Syrians in custody. Assad asked if this is true, how is it that so many people support him? Experts say that some of the support comes from people who fear what would follow his fall.
Syria is starting a new reality show. It wants to convince the West it is winning the battle in Syria. It is offering a path back to life in Syria to opponents who give up.
But is Syria winning? Syria has not retaken the city of Aleppo. The Syrian financial pound is almost worthless. Millions of children are not in school. Still, Assad defends all his actions. He says it has all been for the good of the Syrian people. He says the charges against him are lies by Americans.
His reality is what he says it is.
Source: The New York Times November 1, 2016